Halloween is finally upon us! Nothing helps the residents of Fort Myers, Florida get in the Halloween spirit like spooky decorations and finding the perfect costume to go trick-or-treating. Although October is a fun month full of autumn activities and cool weather, many people do not know that some Halloween festivities can also pose a fire threat.
Halloween fire facts according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
- From 2014 to 2018, an average of 770 home structure fires began with decorations per year.
- More than two of every five (44%) of these fires occurred because the decorations were too close to a heat source, such as a candle or hot equipment.
- More than one-third (36%) of these fires were started by candles.
- More than one-fifth (22%) of the decoration fires started in the kitchen; 16% began in the living room.
At such a high cost, it’s crucial that you take the necessary steps to help prevent a fire from igniting in your home this season. To help you enjoy a safer holiday, follow these important Halloween safety tips from the experts at Armstrong Water Mold Cleanup & Restorations.
In order to avoid preventable fires this Halloween, there are a couple of things you can do to keep yourself and your family safe. Our favorite Halloween and fall decorations, such as jack-o’-lanterns, paper ghosts, and hay bales are unfortunately fire hazards. There are some costumes your children should avoid that are flammable and dangerous.
Look over our Halloween fire safety tips from Armstrong to get the most out of your Halloween this October.
- When choosing a costume, stay away from the billowing or long-trailing fabric. If you are making your own costume, choose a material that won’t easily ignite if it comes into contact with heat or flame. Look for costumes labeled “Flame-Resistant”–nylon or heavyweight polyester costumes are best. Flame Resistant does not mean ‘fireproof’.
- Children should stay away from open flames. Be sure they know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire. (Have them practice stopping immediately, dropping to the ground, covering their face with hands, and rolling over and over to put the flames out.)
- Swords, knives, and similar accessories should be made of soft, flexible material.
- Trick-or-treaters should wear sturdy walking shoes that fit properly.
Trick or Treat
- Make your home safe for trick-or-treaters.
- Remove all objects around the outside of your house that could cause children to trip or fall. Turn your outside light on.
- Parties should only be hosted within your household.
- Remember to keep exits clear of decorations, so nothing blocks escape routes.
- Ensure that all children in your home know the location of the exits should an emergency arise.
- Ensure you have installed working smoke and CO alarms, and practice your home escape plan.
- It is safest to use a flashlight or battery-operated candles in a jack-o-lantern.
- If you use a real candle, use extreme caution.
- Tea lights are a safer option and should be used outdoors only.
- Make sure children are watched at all times when candles are lit.
- When lighting candles inside jack-o-lanterns, use long fireplace-style matches or a utility lighter.
- Be sure to place lit pumpkins well away from anything that can burn and far enough out of the way of trick-or-treaters, doorsteps, walkways, and yards.
- Ensure you extinguish the flame—do not leave it burning.
- Avoid decorating with candles or torch lights.
- Ensure that combustible Halloween decorations such as crepe paper, cornstalks, and dried flowers are kept well away from sources of heat, including light bulbs and heaters.
- Keep all exits clear of decorating materials.
- If using decorative lights indoors or outdoors, check lights for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Discard damaged sets. Do not overload extension cords.
Candle Fire Safety Tips
If you do plan to use candles, here are some tips to use candles safely:
- Always extinguish candles before moving them.
- Always use a suitable holder when burning candles.
- Keep clothes and hair away from an open flame.
- Candles should always be sited out of the reach of children and pets.
- Put candles on a heat-resistant surface (note: TVs are not fire-resistant objects).
- Extinguish candles before you leave a room and never go to sleep with a candle still burning.
Protect Your Home Year-Round
Now that we’ve covered some fire safety tips, it’s important to talk about who to call when a fire strikes. There are generally going to be different types of fire damage that you have to deal with as a result of a fire, all of which can ruin different parts of your home.
Working With Armstrong For Your Fire Damage Restoration Services
In the wake of a fire damage or smoke damage scenario, it can be a difficult time for you and your family. A major component of helping recover is knowing that your home and property have the right fire damage restoration services in Fort Myers to ensure that you are safe and protected.
Southwest Florida homeowners have the perfect option in the professionals at Armstrong Water Mold Cleanup & Restorations. We have the skills and expertise to provide quality fire damage clean-up in Fort Myers no matter the nature or extent of the damage.
We can also provide you with additional guidance throughout the entire restoration process. Reach out to us today for a free inspection and estimate. Call (239) 592-3777.